THEY CHEATED ME –
& now I’m left out in the cold
PREVIOUS: “Fear is the Absence of Love”
REMINDER: See ACRONYM page for abbrev.
An ACoA CORE ISSUE is the conviction that:
• there’s not enough love in the world – for us
• we don’t have the ability to love, OR
• we don’t have enough love to go around
Q: Manda asked if this was a common problem for ACoAs. She has, for some time, wanted to study Veterinary Medicine but is hesitant to try because of a fear-based belief: If she takes care of other animals & gives them her affection, she will not have enough left over for her own dogs, which she dearly loves (& eventually her children)
A: YES it is a familiar belief and NO, it’s not accurate
LOVE – some observations:
Science is finally studying it, & Spirituality has always maintained that we can’t live in harmony without it (more: definition of LOVE) :
1. Love is first & foremost an emotion, & all emotions are psychic energy generated in the brain, so it has no limits “…love lies inside the very cells of our physical body, hidden away until we learn to access it…”
2. Love is then manifested in our words & actions (bottom of pg 14)
3. Healthy self-love (a deep sense of having value) is created by being unconditionally accepted by someone who is important to us4. Developing healthy self-love allows up to have the inner resources to share with others in a non-toxic way
5. Love can be nourished & enhanced by consistently interacting with positive & joyful ‘people, places & things’
6. Love is a healing force – for mental distress, physical ailments & emotional wounds (as applied to bi-polar illness) (music album) (Book:
“Healing with Love” – L. Laskow)
7. Healthy Love includes: good boundaries, a strong sense of worth, a connection to a H.P., mental clarity & a generous spirit
8. The more we share healthy love with others the more love we get back, which makes us feel safer and more comfortable in the world
♥ ♥ ♥
Where do our fearful, LOVE-LIMITING beliefs come from?
a. FROM THEM: our needy & abusive FAMILY (& often other sources such as school, religion, the community…)
• It’s helpful to remember that the adults we grew up with had:
✓ fear of abandonment ✓ self-hate
✓ cognitive distortions ✓ active addictions
✓ emotional problems such as depression, NPD, co-dependence…..
• These dysfunctions combined to make our parents (Ps) very fearful, with a ‘deprivation mentality’ (Ts) & a deep sense of lack (Es). To survive without getting recovery for themselves, they used whatever was in their environment to get by – each other, their work, their addictions – but MAINLY they used their children as a source of vitality – like vampires!
▶ SO – while our parents may have said they loved us, our experience was very different. We got the message that we didn’t count very much, leaving us feeling deprived, because they consistently gave their ‘love’ to other people, places & things before us:
— TO their spouses/ mates, parents, friends, religion, community
— TO their addictions, jobs/ careers, hobbies
— TO one or more of our siblings (dead or alive!)
Being “Tight Knit” – Many of our Ps didn’t want us to get involved with others outside of the family because it would take us away from focusing on them, but if they did socialize, it was at our expense!
• Our parents ISOLATING from the world:
✓ FoA – since our Ps never dealt with their own losses, they emotionally & mentally crippled their children to keep us attached & loyal for a life time. This was done by neglecting, berating, controlling & belittling us, which prevented the development of self-esteem
✓ Addictions, Shame, Fear of Risk – alcoholic families are typically a closed system – they generally don’t reach out to be of service or help to the community NOR participate in outside activities for fun & PMES nourishment
✓ Narcissism – all Ns feed off of the attention & ‘service’ of others in order to keep their facade in tact (‘Malignant Self-Love’ by Dr. Sam Vaknin – about male narcissists, & Links page for other articles)
• Our parents INTERACTING from the world:
▶ Looking ‘Good’ – some parents, who also had all the above issues, created a facade for
the public which made them seem healthy, even ‘wonderful’ – to others,
such as being: • pious & scholarly in their religious circle
• respected public figures in their careers
• popular in the local social networks, clubs, groups
• amusing, friendly & well-liked at work
• admired for doing community service, helping others in need, generous with their time & possessions …. but at home, with their own children they were neglectful, abusive, controlling, demanding, perfectionistic, insensitive, raging….. which left us very confused, and even more convinced that others were ok but we were unlovable!
EXP: More than one of us had a parent give our toys or clothes away to others kids / families without telling us or considering how betrayed & devastated we’d feel, just to make themselves look good!
NEXT: Not enough Love? (Part 2)